Updating Back and Side Yard

5 Materials
3 Days

I wasn't really too concerned at first about fixing up our yard since... well, we are in the country after all. But after two puppies and a crazy rainy season in California... I definitely changed my mind. I wanted a grassy area in the back and side of the house so that when the dogs come in from the rain, their muddy paws would have a chance to be wiped off. And our mostly dirt road was really muddy during the rain! So we decided to gravel it up.
So this was the house after we got it (mostly) painted. As you can see there isn't much to the yard... except weeds and dirt.
We purchased about 1600 sq ft of sod from Craigslist from 2 different sellers for about $280 total. While laying down grass, we also made space on the side of the house for a flower be of some sort. Bought lawn edging from Home Depot and installed it.

P.S - Hubby used the tractor to churn up the soil so the sod can be put down. It just helps level the ground a bit more.
Next, we borrowed a trailer and purchased 22 tons of gravel for about $500. Fortunately we live about 5 minutes away from a gravel company. We spread it out evenly where we wanted the cars to park.
To separate the gravel from the grass, we got old railroad ties, left behind by the previous owner and used them as a separator.
This cutie was anything but helpful! Love her to death though
For the flowers in the yard, we found daffodils -- near the front of the house growing like crazy. So instead of spending tons of money on plants, we decided to use these instead.
We also got black mulch to cover the rest of the area! These plants were really hard to put in as our soil is very clay-y and I had to dig the clay out and put in better dirt for the plants.
And this is the result of the project! Its not fancy, but it works -- for now. My hubby went after Christmas and got the solar candy cane lights for 10 cents on clearance... I'll work on painting that someday, but not today
After a couple more weeks of crazy rain, the daffodils managed to bloom! They are pretty for something we got for free!

Here is the approx. breakdown:
Sod - $280
Gravel - $500
Black Mulch - $30 for about 10 bags
Lawn Edging - $25 for about 60 ft of lawn edging
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Have a question about this project?

3 of 15 questions
  • Donna Bailey
    on Feb 16, 2019

    Why didn’t you post a photo of the finished project?

  • Sam
    on Feb 17, 2019

    ok, where was the stone put? saw pics of flowers, plants, siding, dog, sod, some guy working on the house or something, but nothing that showed me where the 22tons went!

    • Linda
      on Apr 30, 2020

      Deer don't like daffodils nun so your good there!! May 5 dogs never went near any of mine which I have had for years

  • Lily Schlender
    on Feb 18, 2019

    great job ! on the first picture with the sod it looks like there is a slope running to the porch side of the house. won't the rain run towards your house? you may need to regrade the dirt away from the house there? very nice house and cute dog too.

Join the conversation

2 of 130 comments
  • Lyn
    on Dec 8, 2019

    I've been thinking about doing this to increase curb appeal before I put the house up for sale. I already have black mulch in the front. I could just extend it on the sides. Now I just need to find deer/rabbit proof plants! Thanks for the info.

  • Linda
    on Apr 30, 2020

    I have had daffodils for years May 5dogs never go heart them & deer do not like them!😀

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